Greeting card company Hallmark drew criticism earlier this week when they released a holiday ornament with changed lyrics to the song “Deck the Halls,” reports the Associated Press.
The ornament, a tacky red, green, and gold sweater, featured the line “Don we now our FUN apparel,” with “fun” replacing the word “gay.”
However, Hallmark’s attempt to be politically correct caused an immediate backlash.
"To me ... 'gay' still means happy — joyful — I refuse to let the word [be] hijacked by the same-sex relationship community," one Facebook commenter wrote on the company's wall Thursday. "I will also avoid Hallmark from this point on."
Initially, the company defended its decision to update the lyrics of the classic carol, claiming the word “gay” would leave the lyrics on the ornament “open to misinterpretation.”
"The trend of wearing festively decorated Christmas sweaters to parties is all about fun, and this ornament is intended to play into that, so the planning team decided to say what we meant: 'fun.' That's the spirit we intended and the spirit in which we hope ornament buyers will take it," the company said in a statement.
However, Hallmark updated the company’s response to the PR nightmare induced by the sweater ornament to include an apology on Thursday. “We’ve been surprised at the wide range of reactions expressed about the change of lyrics on this ornament, and we’re sorry to have caused so much concern,” Hallmark said. “We never intend to offend or make political statements with our products, and in hindsight, we realize we shouldn’t have changed the lyrics on the ornament.”
Watch KMBC News 9’s coverage of the ornament debacle in the below video.